September 11, 2001, in my opinion, heralded the world of 'terror' in which we now live. I'm not saying that there were no acts of terrorism before this. After all, war is just terrorism on a grander scale, and one country's soldier or freedom-fighter is another country's terrorist.
Perhaps this event had such an impact on me because I was able to watch it unfold in real time, whereas before, I could only read about these atrocities, or watch them on the six o'clock or late news. With the digital age, this event, its aftermath, the countless conspiracy theories and then many subsequent acts of terror, have been plastered over social media for all the world to see and comment on.
Terrorists are given a fame they really don't deserve.
Terrorism preys on the weak and helpless, incites misunderstandings, bigotry, racism, and hatred, and it divides families, communities and nations. It's an insidious cancer that seems to be spreading, pretty much unchecked.
Recent attacks in the UK have brought this home to me in a big way, not because I lost someone, but because I very nearly did. I think of my family as one of the blessed ones. At least I got to hold and comfort my daughter and help her through this. Others were not so lucky.
While these events emphasise our vulnerability we don't allow them to govern how we live. Instead, we continue to live our lives, perhaps a little more cautiously but never cowering in fear, or the terrorist wins.